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Jon 08-23-2008 05:18 PM

Eaton Compressor threatens to sue me over "Made in China" compressor post
Just wanted to let everyone know that Matt Cain, the President of Eaton Compressor, has threatened me with a frivolous lawsuit over a discussion that mentions how Eaton Compressors are made in China. He also indicated that he had previously pressured other forums into deleting similar threads.

Mr. Cain has been attempting to strong-arm me into revealing the identity of a forum member, and threatening me with legal action if I didn't remove a certain post on this forum. Most recently, after a phone call with Mr. Cain in which he told me: "I will not stop with just making threats", I got a letter from Mr. Cain's lawyer, Richard W. Miller of the law firm Balyeat, Leahy, Daley & Miller, requesting the identity of the poster.

I have refused to provide Mr. Cain's lawyer with any information (ie: email address or IP addresses) that would lead to the identity of the member.

If you are a forum administrator reading this thread, here's the important part: You don't have to delete anything for Eaton Compressor, or give them any information about anybody. They have no legal ground to stand on, and are simply threatening you with baseless legal claims.

On this forum, the post in question is here. It's currently coming up #3 in Google for searches for "Eaton compressor". In the post, a member quoted a post from, in which a member quoted an email from Eaton Compressor, stating that certain Eaton products are "built in China".

Mr. Cain has made some ridiculous legal claims about this post in an attempt to get it pulled. Oddly, the post appears to simply be reproducing an email sent by Eaton Compressor itself.

Mr. Cain told me that "if 60% of the machine is made here, the machine is considered 'Made in the USA' by law", which seems be a generous interpretation of the actual docs from the Federal Trade Commission. It's very interesting to see how the President of a huge compressor company interprets the concept of "Made in the USA". Not that there's anything inherently evil about Chinese manufacturing, but there is something wrong with twisting the truth.

In the letter from the law firm, Mr. Cain's lawyer said: "In fact the reference to the product being made in China is simply no longer truthful."

Yes folks, he didn't say "not true" he said "no longer truthful". My guess is that, the compressor in question was originally considered "Made in China", and an Eaton Compressor tech guy revealed that in an email to a prospective customer, who reproduced it on a forum. Later, through generous mathematics and some creative lawyering, perhaps Eaton Compressor was able to bring the spin on that product up over Cain's "60%" figure, and thus could now claim that it was "Made in the USA". After they took care of that, Cain probably wanted to do some retroactive damage control, and figured some administrator-threatening would work to eliminate the evidence from Google.

I have no idea as to what percentage of Eaton Compressor's products are manufactured in China, and I'm not familiar with the in-the-trenches legal maneuvering that decides the day-to-day interpretation of the phrase "Made in the USA". However, I could not help but notice that an article in the Dayton Business Journal revealed that Mr. Cain is investing $5 million in a new company, Eaton-Max, to retail the products he manufactures. The article stated: "Cain is launching the new venture by teaming up with a silent partner out of China. The Chinese partner and Cain each will own 50 percent of Eaton-Max."

Judging from public minutes of commissioner's meetings in Mr. Cain's county, as well as posts that Mr. Cain has made on a local Ohio forum, it appears that he has a reputation for threatening people with frivolous lawsuits.

In my final communication with Mr. Cain, he said to me: "You will pay for this".

When I told Mr. Cain that I would be letting people know about his behind-the-scenes intimidation tactics to spin the percentage of "Made in China" parts in his compressors, he uttered a truly classic line: "You will be in even more bigger trouble".

coldknock 08-23-2008 05:42 PM

"Knock him out Jon"

Those of you old enough, and southern enough, will get that.


58Apache 08-23-2008 06:20 PM

Sorry to hear this
I am really sorry to read this. Eaton used to have a good reputation. I was going to buy Eaton when I eventually have to repair or replace my current compressor.

They are close enough to me where I could go pick one up in my truck. The Chinese stuff didn't bother me too much if it didn't hurt quality. It's hard to find anything without something made in China these days.

However, this doesn't sound like the kind of business I want to give my money to?


41willys 08-23-2008 08:04 PM

Very interesting, I will be glad to forward this to others. It is like a little gossip, hey, guess what??? Eaton compressors are not completely "Made in the USA"... but from China... If they posted that on their product, Made in the USA, would that be lying"?

Jon, are you :sweat: ?


rags70ss 08-23-2008 09:25 PM

re: Eaton Compressor threatens to sue me over "Made in China" compressor post
Hope everything works out... I will support your cause if need... :thumbup:

Crosley 08-23-2008 09:32 PM

Matt Cain needs some schooling on grammar too.


schnitz 08-23-2008 09:43 PM


Originally Posted by Crosley
Matt Cain needs some schooling on grammar too.


But.. But... Apparently they don't offer the type of grammar lessons he needs in China.....

In a while, Chet.

dinger 08-23-2008 11:10 PM

I love it when Jon does these expose's.... :D

BMM 08-23-2008 11:13 PM

I don't care what kind of quality the company makes...stuff like this ensures I will never, ever, ever consider a product of theirs. Ever.

What a (rhyme time) mupid pile of chit, useless dockphuk's gotta earn his wage somewhere I guess eh? Even the chinese aren't that bad.

Eaton compressors are made in Chine. I wonder if I'll get sued now.

But yeah, I heard Eatons are made in China!

47dodge 08-24-2008 03:44 AM

The fact that some of their major parts are made in China is disappointing(especially since my last two jobs have left the country) but Mr. Cains tactics have convinced me to never buy his products. Jobs leaving the country are sad but a fact of life today. If he would have said they had to do it to stay competitive I think people would understand but to try to hide it through intimidation is just wrong. Thank you Jon and Hotrodders Bulletin Board for standing up and showing companies like Eaton, Street Beasts, and the others that have been exposed for what they truly are. Keep fighting for the truth. That is what makes this place great.


41willys 08-24-2008 05:42 AM

We need to find out what components are made in China, so maybe we can debunk the 60% rule. Find out if the major components come from outside the USA.


speedydeedy 08-24-2008 07:21 AM

JON,Thanks for having big balls and intelligence too. I have been threatened by lawyers in the past and in every case it was just to try to scare me off. Like you it did not scare me and never went any further.This is still the USA and you have the right to voice your opinion.Keep up the good work. :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:

weirdbeard 08-24-2008 07:32 AM

Somebody needs to remind this guy where we are! This is the USA! Not communists China. We can say what we want without being shot for it. (Most of the time. ;) )
If he does not want people to know some of the compressors are made in China then he should not be doing it. :nono: Just tell the truth about it! :rolleyes:

I am in the market for a better compressor. I will not be buying Eaton. Not because of China parts, but because they are butt faces. :cool:

oldred 08-24-2008 07:36 AM

Is that guy a TOTAL IDIOT? There are numerous posts here that simply rave about the quality of those things! :confused: I am sure, I mean I KNOW for a fact that these discussions here, and a couple of other sites, have sold several compressors for that outfit and until now they probably had more respect here than even some of the old industrial names. I answered my own question that guy IS an idiot and speaking for myself I will never recommend them to anyone again! IMO this is going to backfire on them bigtime, just wait until the rumor gets around that if a customer don't like his compressor and says anything he will get sued! :rolleyes:

timothale 08-24-2008 07:57 AM

made somewhere else
I remember after WW II when make in Japan Meant junk and later when made in taiwan meant junk. I guy I knew was hired by the Taiwan government to go around to the manufacturing plants and to try to get them to improve quality and eventually get a better reputation for their products. Most places i have seen overseas have gross safety problems and pollution problems. when the people complained the factories moved to another jungle island where there were no rules and a dollar a day and a bowl of rice would get all the workers they needed

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